Tag Archives: Fall 2021

R. Austin Freeman and the Victorian forensic thriller

Anthony Papagiannis Thessaloniki, Greece   Richard Austin Freeman, c. 1935. W.L. Briant. Via Encyclopædia Britannica. Many people today are acquainted with well-known books and television series of forensic crime fiction. The modern detective fiction writer is expected to provide detailed descriptions of autopsies, current technology, pharmacology, and toxicology. Yet, even in this relatively new version […]

The secret medical school in the Warsaw Ghetto

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   Poland, Warsaw Ghetto. Passers-by next to a Jewish child in rags lying on the sidewalk (sleeping, sick or dying?). 1941. German Federal Archives. Via Wikimedia. CC BY-SA 3.0 DE. In September 1939, Nazi Germany invaded Poland. The invaders quickly started to repress the Jews of Poland and confiscate their property […]

Remembrance of things past

JMS Pearce Hull, England, United Kingdom   Photo by Anita Jankovic on Unsplash In these troubled times imposed by Covid-19, much attention has been paid to depression, stress, and complaints of enforced isolation and of longing for the old days—the “normal times.” In this and in other contexts, nostalgia is regarded as a normal sentiment […]

Hypochondria

JMS Pearce Hull, England, United Kingdom   Figure 1: Cover of Hypochondriasis. A practical treatise by John Hill. Source. In words, as fashions, the same rule will hold; Alike fantastic, if too new, or old: Be not the first by whom the new are tried, Nor yet the last to lay the old aside. — […]

William Osler

Sir William Osler circa 1912. Unknown photographer. Via Wikimedia. CC BY 4.0. It is good to review periodically the lives of famous men lest they be forgotten by new generations. In medicine few people have been the subject of more books, articles, and reviews then Sir William Osler. He has been called the father of […]

Discrimination: From Blues to Amazing Grace to sleeves

Lauren E. Hill Walnut Cove, North Carolina, United States Jack E. Riggs Morgantown, West Virginia, United States   Combat support hospital sailors wearing sleeves down (Army way). Three-star admiral (far right) wearing sleeves up (Navy way). Author (far left), hospital commanding officer. In a “sleeves down” world, life may be easier blending in. “Collective fear […]

As my mother lay dying

Peter Meyers Washington, D.C., United States   Rosalie Smiles in Her Fancy New Hat. Photo by Judy Baxter. 2006. Via Flickr. CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 My mother was sitting up in bed when I walked into her hospital room. When I asked her how she was doing, she grinned and responded, “Super!” Her doctor, standing nearby, […]

Who is “Dr. Filth”?

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   Child survivors of Auschwitz, wearing adult-size prisoner jackets, stand behind a barbed wire fence. The group includes a few twins. Still from the Soviet Film of the liberation of Auschwitz by the film unit of the First Ukrainian Front-Alexander Voronzow. 1945. Via Wikimedia. Public Domain. Bob Dylan’s song “Desolation Row” […]

Béla Bartók (1881-1945): The years in America, triumph over tragedy

James L. Franklin George Dunea Chicago, Illinois, United States   Fig 1. Béla Bartók in 1927. Unknown Photographer. Via Wikimedia. Black clouds of war were hanging over the world when Béla Bartók and his wife Ditta Pásztory (1903-1982) disembarked in New York Harbor on October 30, 1940. For the remainder of his life, Bartók would […]

Indo-European for health professionals

Logo of the Asiatic Society of Bengal depicting Sir William Jones. 1905. Via Wikimedia. The Indo-Europeans were a group of people whose language is presumed to be the ancestor of most modern languages spoken in Europe and in parts of Asia. They left behind almost no tangible evidence of their existence other than some funeral […]